Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Biffier the better

We were seated on opposite sides of the runway. But her and her friends were as loud as mine, so we passed on jokes straight through the dresses. Shouts were tossed across instead of the usual whispers or text messages. And after it all we lifted stiff backs out of chairs and extended handshakes, names and numbers.

It was all accepted, as it always is, at that party they throw in the name of everything alternative. One year later, though, we find ourselves in the midst of another event, this time prim, proper, and economic.

We’ve got jobs to do, so she does hers and I do mine, move through questions and answers. In an e-mail I follow up, and am told a lady never gives out age, or size: oh right, prim-and-proper.

Size is still what’s to be discussed, so that’s what we do. Silhouettes and shapes are changed, each garment made to flatter. Fashion is not always about looking good, he once wrote, but was made to re-consider.

This time it is, I guess, so I’ll let her have it.

*Read about size, silhouette, shape, and the rest of it in my article on Jessica Biffi’s capsule collection for Addition Elle in The Calgary Herald.

The female anatomy

It’s a cycle, these girls in mothers’ dresses, powdering on noses, building empires and sewing handbags to put their names on. The jeans are passed down, tried on, brought in or out at the seams, whatever happens to be in fashion.

Ink has long been spilt on this ilk, on blogs and newsprint gossip pages. They’ve held their heads at that thirty-five degree angle since glass has been cut into lenses. One day soon they’ll push strollers, too, buy black dresses to mourn in.

There’s a certain breed of girl who dreams of becoming Lauren Conrad, he wrote. And he’s told, in the college he goes to, another breed of blonde, who spends her nights flicking through Facebook, dreaming of becoming Jaclyn Genovese.

So it continues.

*All of this, and these other thoughts, I guess, so much to tell you: There's an article I wrote on the girls at the boutique Jacflash, stars of their webby reality show, Jaclife, in the Vancouver Sun.
And, go.

The first flares shot up out of the Allstream Centre Sunday night, signaling the race had begun. IZMA opened with a string of fantasy furs, growing gray and gold out of models' shoulders, all wrapped in black sheer and leather. I watched from home, tucked into a toque and fleece sweater.

In the a.m. was Sunny Fong and VAWK in its airy, open, sun-lit space, usually reserved for artsy intellectuals and Toronto-tourist types. After a morning of calls missed and answered, I put down the phone and pen, pulled out the camera.

The invitation promised Fong would make pretty the mess that has been our lives all these months: the economic crash that told us we'd brought back the eighties too fast, too hard, Mr. McQueen's suicide; our unmentioned personal problems.

Out of that decay beauty was maybe born, but mostly we held in our hands, trying not to touch furs as they passed, giggled and made jokes about taking mushrooms. And as always, it was over as soon as it began, we took off in different directions.

On to the next show, next look, collection, season, story. Wait until 11:00 to pull the red out, pass on parties, highlight notes and prep to file in the morning.

*Update: an article I wrote on VAWK is online now. I don't work at the Vancouver Sun but it seems an editor there really likes my writing. Thanks for the pick-up, VS.

Mr. Ben Barry watching the madness unfold from the second floor
Sunny smiles for the press Afiya Francisco of the Style House chatting before the show
Lay Dee takes in her first runway show
Ainsley Kerr and Jessica Biffi before the show begins
Ms. Robin Kay of the FDCC arrives
Ms. Kay again, seated next to Glen Baxter of Fashion Television
Oh, and that's Russ, or Russless, or something of the sort; whoever
One last laugh

For my slideshow of all the looks click here.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Everything in 3D, all the time

Fashion is a battle, and the war is raging on. It's one waify warrior against the other, scratching out each others 3D eyes. But you can read all about that, and Nada, and the rest of it, in the Vancouver Sun.

*Update: or the Gazette! Options, options.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

it's all about to bloom.

A few weeks ago we both fell down the rabbit hole. Rapidly dashing from school to work and back, rarely checking messages, inboxes, or knocking on doors. We've disappeared into the pages of books and between the lines of text we've written. Sleep is alone, fragmented, always ending too early. Coffee comforts the Redbull lining our stomachs; we often forget to eat.

We spin and spin and spin, not quite ourselves or others, or anything at all. Just blurs pushing past whatever it is we're trying to accomplish. But we'll get there.

Until then, Love me till I'm me again?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

My dad's beer league hockey team just won their third championship in a row.
Total hero.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Get Slushed

Gays, get ready. You're about to be slushed in the face. Mr. Ryan Murphy is on the hunt for three new Gleeks for season two of Glee, including a boyfriend for Kurt.

We’re going to make them a power couple. We’re not going to do the whole hiding in the shadows thing. We’re going to make them popular, and out and proud and glamorous. Like prom king and king," Murphy tells EW.

Who will fill the shiny tap shoes? My vote's for Brett Owen, better known as Bretney, my school's singing, dancing star. Back in seventh grade Brett taped the video for Hit Me Baby One More Time and taught himself all the moves.

He polished his performance and took to the school stage each time his teen queen released a new song-and-dance. And if bringing the Britney to small town Manitoba doesn't call for a Slushie in the face, I don't know what does.

Brett filmed his audition tape for the open casting call, which he 'released' at a party at his home in Vancouver last week before a Dragonette show. The tape hasn't hit Youtube yet, but he's uploaded some stills to a Facebook page urging the producers to pick him that I've posted above and below.

Send the boy some support, if only to further my constant quest put CCI in the gossip pages.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Fashion week and/or fashion is for the weak

Preparations for madness have begun. After spending the past three months on Style.com watching the collections walk across my screen, it's almost time to see models and garments on a real runway.

So begins the e-mail RSVPs, phone calls, and interview requests. I trekked uptown today to find out what the editors want, and am now ready to get lost in all our local fashion. But before that there are a few friends whose collections I'd rather see than any other.

Above and below are pieces by Angelo Amante, worn by the beautiful Syliva Ogweng. We all worked together, long ago, in (of course) retail hell. Now Angelo is finishing up at school and has photos of girls in pretty dresses to share.

After all the established designers parade their looks, the students will take their turn. With Jade and Kitty graduating, I'll be taking a seat at this year's Mass Exodus exhibit. There the critical eye will be turned off, and with it will go all my snarky remarks.

And maybe, if I'm as nice like I plan to be, someday I'll get a special custom-tailored piece made especially to fit.

*photos by Kevin Marzo

Last week Lauren Wilton, Joel Solish, and Mary Luz Mejia sat down with me to talk about how social media has changed the food community. As active community members, bloggers, and tweeters, they've seen the landscape of Toronto's food scene change in recent years.

We talked about how and why they tweet, which restaurants have the best twitter feeds (and food), foodie meet ups, and followers becoming friends.

One too many jack-n-cokes, two Pricketts, twenty three years old.
Happy Birthday, Carli.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Last Thursday these three made the trek to the Ryerson campus, where I led them down the long dark hallway towards our online computer lair. There they sat down before my video cam and chatted about eating, tweeting, and the like.

I'll post the full video tomorrow, for now, meet my guests:

Monday, March 15, 2010

Keg stand Saturdays

The girls at school said it wasn't college without a kegger. So they picked me up, made sure I was dressed festive enough, and brought me along to an annual afternoon extravaganza. By five I was stumbling out of hooker Harvey's, cheeseburger in one hand, umbrella in the other.

Right then I thought to myself: I'm really going to miss this place.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

spin that video, one more time

The future is brought to you, by Virgin Mobile and our lady of radio gaga. So she says: once you kill a cow, you gotta make a burger.